The Open Reflow Project

This PCB Solders Itself, Then Others

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There are times when even the best soldering irons won’t speed up your soldering pace. So what if the board soldered itself? This is the goal of Carl Bugeja, and this PCB that can solder itself and then other boards!

Bugeja’s approach is described using a pizza analogy: The PCB is the dough, the solder paste is the sauce, and the toppings are the circuit components. Put all of this into the oven, and you have a  ̶t̶a̶s̶t̶y̶ ̶p̶i̶z̶z̶a̶  PCB ready to go!

For those not familiar with surface mount electronics, large stencils are placed over pre-fabricated PCBs. Next, a layer of solder paste (think toothpaste, not typical solder) is applied through the stencils. A pick-and-place machine is then used to drop the components onto the solder paste, and then the whole board goes into a reflow oven where the components are baked into place. If you need to make thousands of boards, then this is the way.

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